A study in the United States indicates the ineffectiveness of an antimalarial drug in patients with COVID-19

A study in the United States indicates the ineffectiveness of an antimalarial drug in patients with COVID-19

First research results in the USA indicate that the malaria drug hydroxychloroquine does not help to fight the coronavirus. EURACTIV Germany reports. The study published on Tuesday (21 April) even showed that the mortality rate among patients treated with the drug was significantly higher than for patients treated without the drug. According to the study, 28% of patients with COVID-19 who had been administered hydroxychloroquine died. In contrast, the mortality rate of patients treated without the antimalarial drug was only 11%. The study also found that patients treated with hydroxychloroquine…

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EU and COVID-19: time to act outside the box

EU and COVID-19: time to act outside the box

The Eurogroup’s decisions taken on 9 April were a necessary and overdue collective EU response, as well as a welcome but flawed and incomplete compromise. If European leaders are to save the EU economy when they meet on 23 April, they need to think outside the box, write Carlos Closa, George Papaconstantinou, and Miguel Poiares Maduro. The authors are professors at the European University Institute. The Eurogroup decisions relate to financing the crisis management and response, not financing the recovery. While the Eurogroup agreed to work on establishing a Recovery…

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EU Commission will offer to “borrow” to finance the recovery plan: Dombrovskis

EU Commission will offer to “borrow” to finance the recovery plan: Dombrovskis

The EU executive will propose borrowing from the markets in order to finance a recovery plan that will come on top of the EU budget, the European Commission’s vice-president for the economy, Valdis Dombrovskis, told EU lawmakers on Monday (20 April). “We want to reinforce the financing capacity of the next MFF beyond what we have now,” Dombrovskis told MEPs, referring to the EU’s next seven-year budget, the so-called Multi-annual Financial Framework. “For this, we will be setting up an additional fund and indeed, it would be financed from borrowing…

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ESM CEO: Europe needs at least another 500 billion euros from EU institutions to recover

ESM CEO: Europe needs at least another 500 billion euros from EU institutions to recover

Europe will need at least another €500 billion from European Union institutions to finance its economic recovery after the coronavirus pandemic, on top of the agreed half-a-trillion package, the head of the euro zone bailout fund said. In an interview with Italy’s Corriere della Sera paper, published on Sunday (19 April), European Stability Mechanism Managing Director Klaus Regling said the easiest way to organise such funds would be via the European Commission and the EU budget. “I would say that for the second phase we need at least another €500…

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Giuseppe Conte repeating calls to pool European debt

Giuseppe Conte repeating calls to pool European debt

The “full firepower” of the European Union will be needed to overcome the historic shock of the coronavirus crisis, Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte told German media Sunday (19 April), repeating calls to pool European debt. Ahead of a video conference between EU leaders this Thursday, Conte reiterated demands for controversial pooled debt instruments known as “coronabonds” in an interview with the Sueddeutsche Zeitung (SZ) newspaper. “We are experiencing the biggest shock since World War II, and Europe has to come up with an answer,” said Conte. The “full firepower”…

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Surrendering to autocracy in the fight against COVID-19, Hungary poisons European ideals

Surrendering to autocracy in the fight against COVID-19, Hungary poisons European ideals

The EU must swiftly propose and adopt sanctions against the latest ‘democratic backsliding’ by the Hungarian government, say leading European politicians, media and civil society leaders in an open letter whose signatories include former Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, philosopher Bernard-Henri Lévy, and EURACTIV founder Christophe Leclercq. We Europeans need to fight two viruses, simultaneously and equally vehemently: COVID-19, attacking our bodies, and yet another infection targeting our ideals and democracies. On March 30, 2020, the Hungarian Parliament adopted a text that allows the government to suspend the enforcement of certain…

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Will Italy’s coronavirus epidemic fuel the far right?

Will Italy’s coronavirus epidemic fuel the far right?

Italy is staring down the barrel of the worst recession since World War II, which could bolster the far-right and damage the country’s love affair with the European Union, analysts say. Much will depend on how Rome handles the easing of the national lockdown, how quickly it manages to get liquidity to suffering businesses, and how much solidarity it is seen to get from the EU at a key meeting next week. The coronavirus emergency in Italy has fuelled not only national pride but also eurosceptic and populist narratives. That…

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Holy fire burns as Orthodox Easter bells echo over almost empty Jerusalem

Holy fire burns as Orthodox Easter bells echo over almost empty Jerusalem

The Holy Fire ceremony symbolising Jesus’ resurrection was lit in a deserted Jerusalem on Saturday (18 April), without the joyful throng of Orthodox Christian pilgrims who normally attend a spectacle that brings the Easter season to a colourful climax. Bells tolled above a near-empty Church of the Holy Sepulchre as the Greek Orthodox Patriarch, Theophilos III, emerged carrying the flame from the crypt where Christians believe Jesus was buried. This year, amid coronavirus precautions in a locked-down Jerusalem, he was accompanied only by a handful of mostly Orthodox clergy, some…

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Greece will remove migrants from congested island camps

Greece will remove migrants from congested island camps

Greece will this month begin moving hundreds of elderly and ailing asylum seekers out of congested island camps to protect them from the coronavirus, the migration ministry said on Thursday (16 April). The ministry said 2,380 “vulnerable persons” will be moved out of camps on Aegean islands to apartments, hotels and other camps on the mainland. Authorities said the operation will begin on 19 April and take about two weeks. Details will be announced at a later date. “This additional protective measure aims to further reduce the risk of a…

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Austrian writer and civil society activist pave the way for a “common good economy”

Austrian writer and civil society activist pave the way for a “common good economy”

Award-winning author Christian Felber believes the coronavirus outbreak is the perfect moment to question the entire system, after advocating for years to switch from capitalism to a public-interest economy. He explained his ideas in an interview. Christian Felber is an award-winning author, university lecturer and freelance dancer in Vienna. He is the initiator of the Cooperative for the Common Good and the Common Good Economy. He has written several bestsellers, most recently “Ethical World Trade” and “The Common Good Economy”. What distinguishes public interest economics from classical economics? I’d dispute…

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